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What are the main problems in the management of rural cooperatives in Southern Brazil?

Brandão, Janaína Balk, Breitenbach, Raquel
Land use policy 2019 v.85 pp. 121-129
cooperatives, politics, Brazil
This research aims to identify the main problems encountered in the management of agricultural cooperatives in Rio Grande do Sul and factors that may interfere in their success. It has three specific objectives. First, it seeks to identify how members participate in these agricultural cooperatives’ decisions. Second, with the goal of helping cooperatives to develop solutions, it verifies the types of difficulties encountered in the current configuration of markets that cooperatives are placed in. Third, it identifies actions to minimize the managerial problems of agricultural cooperatives. This work is based on a multicase study on 10 agricultural cooperatives in the state, whose managers were interviewed in a semi-structured way in 2016. The results showed that the main problems encountered in the management of these organizations are as follows. a) Cooperatives compete with other companies in the sector, and they must be competitive while being faithful to the cooperative principles. b) The team responsible for the cooperatives’ management finds it difficult to compete in oligopolized markets. c) Cooperative members’ participation in management is low. d) Cooperatives’ associates and members exhibit opportunistic behaviors. Three categories of current problems were verified in the management of agricultural cooperatives: 1) political and institutional, 2) behavioral, and 3) technical-administrative.